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Zaki Arsuzi
Arabic: zāki 'arsūzi

(1908- 68) Syrian politician, thinker and counsellor.
Arsuzi's main achievements were his partaking in the founding of the Ba'th Party, as well as being an important counsellor to Hafez al-Assad.

1908: Born in Antioch (now Turkey) into a lower middle-class family.
Late 1920s: Is educated at the University of Sorbonne in Paris, France.
1931: Receives his degree in philosophy.
1932: Establishes himself in Antioch, where he becomes a school teacher.
1930s: Slowly, Arsuzi turns his attention towards nationalist politics.
1939: After the annexation of Antioch by Turkey, Arsuzi moves to Damascus. Here he soon starts his own political groups, aiming at a renaissance in the Arab world. The reaction of the French authorities, was kicking him out of his job.
1947: Following talks that started the preceding year, Arsuzi joins forces with the Ba'th movement led by Michel Aflaq and Salah al-Din Bitar. Together they found the Arab Ba'th Party.
1963: Arsuzi becomes the counsellor to the commander of the air force, Hafez al-Assad, who sets out to impregnate the Syrian military with the ideology of the Ba'th Party.
1968: Dies in Damascus.

By Tore Kjeilen